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Hyundai Sonata Real World MPG



  • vabearvabear Posts: 18
    Just completed a 2200 mile round trip from SE VA to SW FL. I did one leg from Myrtle Beach to Bonita Springs, FL. I went down US 17 to I-95 and then I-10 to 301 and at Ocala linked up with I-75 to Bonita , my average MPG was 27.7. On the Interstate cruising at 75 MPH I was averaging 28.1 MPG. This was in a 2007 Sonata Limited with 3.3 V6, two adults and one dog and trunk and back seat packed.
  • caazcaaz Posts: 209
    I'll be glad to pay 1/2 ur plane ticket if you'd care to come do the drive with me.... My previous car was a honda civic hybrid...I know how to extract the most mpg as possible...Let me also ask this?...In the i see alot of honda accord owners with 2005 (pzev) models all getting round 45 to 47 mpg with thier 4 cyl honda accords...Why didnt i just claim i could match thier numbers?...these number are very truthful and you are welcome to come ride with me anytime. If youll also notice, 40 mpg seems to be my barrier, i cant seem to get any better at 60 mph than at 65...those 2 numbers always come in about the same. Anyway, go to the camrympg and youll see a few others... some that actually have almost 8,000 mi logged in and thier numbers are as good as mine. Now, when im in so cal working each week. Im about 1/2 freeway and 1/2 city, guess what my average numbers are? between 27 & 29mpg. but when i do this straight trip each week to go home, im with the jetstream 100% freeway and those numbers above are my actuall numbers.


    p.s. Even though im going uphill from So cal to phx....(sealevel to 1500ft.) i always get better mileage than going from phx to So cal..which is downhill interesting the jet stream plays that much importance. Dont forget, i'm doing these runs, no a/c jetstream at my back.

    pps. i think for fun I'll rent a Sonata and try my drive to see the difference myself, maybe i can achieve similar numbers since in post #354 somebody else got 37 mpg at exactly the same speed i barely got my 40 mpg. Then i'll report back
  • caaz - you will not be able to achieve the same MPG in a Sonata as in a Camry. Hyundai engines are simply far less efficient than Toyota or Honda engines. In maybe the next 5-10 years, Hyundai will catch up in technology, but not at present time.

    A lot has to do with the internal design of the engine, the materials used to make pistons, cylinder liners and the rings, the ring gap at the top of the piston, injection pattern, port design, valve shape and form, mixture distribution (swirl) inside the cylinder, relative heat inside the combustion chamber, spark reach, computer controlled timing and mixture algorithms, location of sensors, and a plethora of other factors.

    Toyota has A LOT more experience with engine design than Hyundai, that's why their engines are 10-20% more efficient.
  • And maybe Hyundai has already caught up...see March 08 Car @ Driver where mainstream 4 cylinder family cars are tested. All economy numbers listed over 600 miles of road driving and C @ D typically gets less than the average person due to their hard driving style.
    1. new Malibu....24 mpg
    2.Dodge Avenger...26 mpg
    3. Ford Fusion...24mpg
    4. Honda Accord EX...25 mpg
    5. Hyundai Sonata Limited...25 mpg
    6.Nissan Altima 2.5S...23 mpg
    7.Toyota Camry LE...26 mpg
    As you can see 3 mpg was the spread with the Hyundai tied with the Accord and 1 mpg less than the leader/s.
    It isn't going to take 10 years to achieve parity it has already happened.
    For the record Toyota uses no unobtanium or alien derived designs in their engines...same old aluminum block and head, 16 valves, alloys of iron, etc with the same computer assisted designs for combustion chambers etc and every manufacturer uses them. Most modern engines, no make that ALL modern engines, use pretty much the same materials and technology. Don't make it sound as if Hyundai is using 1930's technology.
  • You posted:

    A lot has to do with the internal design of the engine, the materials used to make pistons, cylinder liners and the rings, the ring gap at the top of the piston, injection pattern, port design, valve shape and form, mixture distribution (swirl) inside the cylinder, relative heat inside the combustion chamber, spark reach, computer controlled timing and mixture algorithms, location of sensors, and a plethora of other factors.

    Toyota has A LOT more experience with engine design than Hyundai, that's why their engines are 10-20% more efficient.

    From the press release announcing the 2009 Sonata (note the bolded phrases):

    The 2009 Sonata debuts Hyundai's second-generation Theta four-cylinder engine. The Theta II 2.4-liter DOHC inline four-cylinder engine delivers more horsepower and quicker acceleration, while also improving fuel economy. In fact, the Sonata I4 is now more fuel-efficient than both Camry and Accord four-cylinder engines, delivering an impressive 22 mpg city/32 mpg highway fuel economy rating with the standard five-speed manual transmission or the newly available five-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC®. The Theta II is rated at 175 horsepower and 168 lb.-ft. of torque. This high-tech, all-aluminum, 16-valve engine now features Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) on both camshafts and a Variable Induction System (VIS) for better engine breathing. A version of this engine also meets Partial Zero Emission Vehicle (PZEV) standards.

    Theta II 2.4-liter DOHC inline-four cylinder engine

    Sonata's 3.3-liter V6 engine has also been improved for more performance and efficiency. It now pumps out 15 more horsepower and three more pound-feet of torque (249 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm and 229 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,500 rpm). The first member of Hyundai's "Lambda" V6 engine family, this newly refined powerplant features all-aluminum construction, dual overhead camshafts, four valves per cylinder, CVVT on both camshafts and stiffer hydraulic engine mounts for optimum power, efficiency and refinement. A variable intake system is added for 2009, which further broadens its power curve, improving off-the-line acceleration and passing performance. New mileage figures for V6-powered Sonatas are 19 mpg city/29 mpg highway, which represents unsurpassed V6 fuel economy in the mid-size sedan segment.

    All V6-powered Sonatas use Hyundai's five-speed SHIFTRONIC automatic transmission, which features an overdrive lock-up torque converter for improved highway fuel economy. Neither Accord nor Camry offer manual-mode operation as standard equipment. The automatic transmission has a new reducing valve and solenoid valve for smoother shift quality while the manual transmission has been refined for more precise shifts.


    Nuff said! ;)
  • Apparently, Hyundai decided to wake up and smell the coffee and improve their engines, because they realized they couldn't compete on price alone. Bravo for them!
  • See! My point exactly! The 2009 engine is quite a bit more efficient than the 2008. Obviously they weren't using the latest technology until just now.

    Glad they came around sooner rather than in 5 years. They now have a shot at being competitive with the leaders and the consumer will certainly benefit.
  • caazcaaz Posts: 209
    I agree Sam, im glad they're stepping up. btw trip last night from phx to so cal was against the wind, knocked me side to side several times, so i knew i would be attempting any records. Therefore i chose 80mph...
    Rresults....405.6mi 14.6 ga = 27.78 worst ever. my usuall @ 80 is 31 to 33. When i go back oin thursday, i'm going to try @ 65..providing there's no wind.

  • 27.7 mpg ? well that I can believe. :)
  • my 2006 4 cylinder is getting around 28 mpg in town and 30.5 on trips. I had 2004 camery 6 cylinder before that got the same milage and i felt the sonota would do better than this.
  • Describe your city driving.
  • I don't live in the US, and own a Sonata 2007 V6. There has always been a mystery for me why different consumptions are mentioned in US Catalogs vs European.

    Below is a comparison:

    US Catalog
    .................MPG---------Conv to Lit/100km
    City Cycle------20--------------11.8

    European Catalog
    ................Lit/100km----------Converted to MPG
    City Cycle-------14.8-----------------15.9

    Confusing enough? Surely these figures are achieved on different driving conditions or regimes. But my real life consumptions are closer to European figures i.e.

    Real Life figures
    ...............Lit/100km----------Converted to MPG
    City Cycle------13.5------------------17.4

    So my car is according to its claimed specification, and I am sure US Sonata are not more fuel efficient than other parts of the world. Mine is originally made in Korea.

    Perhaps Specifications are according to different drive regimes, but then what about real world results!?
  • Why do you feel 28 mpg (this is superb but suspect as being high) in town and 30+ on the road is somehow abnormal? No V-6, Camry included, will do better...especially the "in town" part where V-6 mid sized cars e.g. Camry...Sonata...Accord et. al. usually get around 20-22 or even less if you are talking about true city stop-go and gridlock driving. Despite the drivel I sometimes read here on these open forums all these like sized vehicles (4 cylinder compared to 4 cylinder...V-6 to V-6) get approximately the same economy (within 1-2 mpg at best). I just rented a 2007 4 cyl Sonata and it got about 31 mpg when cruising and when I turned it in the fuel economy computer said 28.8 mpg for the whole week-end. This included stop and go and several full throttle 0-80 mph runs. I was trying to see if a 4 cylinder delivered adequate acceleration since I intend to buy a 2009 Sonata....V-6 or 4???? Can't decide but upwardly mobile gas prices again might help.
  • Target,
    What was your take on the 4 cyl?
  • As I said in my post above we rented 2007 Sonata 4 cylinder with 4 speed automatic this past week-end. That this largish 5 passenger car with a big trunk gets over 31 mpg at 70+ mph with three large adults inside is a miracle and one should not complain that it should get more. I also own a 2006 Honda Civic EX sedan automatic( 5 speed) that under similar circumstances gets about 36 mpg. That sounds great except the Civic is considerably less roomy, less quiet, and less comfortable and more annoying in as much as its transmission absolutely HATES to stay in 5th gear. Any slight rise will cause it to downshift into 4th. 5th gear in this car is temporary unless the terrain is bowling alley flat. Anyhow, seeing what one can gain with the Hyundai at a fairly small fuel economy penalty it is no wonder I intend to trade the Honda...for a 2009 Sonata.
  • After trying several "from a dead stop" full throttle runs with the 07 rented Sonata I was impressed. It actually spun the tires on dry pavement and got to my target speed of 80 mph quickly. I also tried a couple 50-70 speed runs simulating a passing run and it seemed quick there also. Keeping in mind that I am an ex 60-70's muscle car owner and my feelings always have been "too much power is just right" I am surprised that I am considering a 4. I always knew I would end up trading our 06 Civic and returning to Hyundai products and always wanted a Sonata since the 06's debut. Further, I absoluted lusted after the 3.3 V-6 but now, especially now since the 09 4 cylinder has more torque and more hp and since the "old" 4 with a 4 speed auto has impressed me I think I will forgo the V-6. Otherwise the car cruises quietly and is pretty much inaudible at idle and gets great fuel economy for a large-ish sedan. Unless you absolutely have to be first away from stoplights I think the new improved 2.4 liter 4 cylinder will be more than adequate.
  • I bought my car in Aug. of 07 and now have 17,000+ on her. I have been pleased over all with the fuel economy I have received so far. I travel 58miles one way to work in a mix of driving. I normally average 44mph over a 3 day period and I have been getting 26.5mpg on 87octane fuel. If I get stuck in a bumper to bumper situation or spend alot of time running errands localy it dropps into the 22 - 23mpg range but with this kind of power in a car this size I am still very happy and I fully expect 28 - 30mpg on a true 60+mph extend trip. I also use an Amsoil 0W-20 full synthetic oil so perhaps that helps alittle as well.
  • Hi, I bought a 2006 Hyundai Sonata V6 and in the MPG gauge, it says that I only get 17.4 MPG. I thought the car fuel MPG is 20MPG street -30MPG highway.

    Can anybody explain this to me? Thank you very much, I will really appreciate your answer.

  • Don't feel bad pal, my '06 gets only 16 around town , now you should feel good. However on the highway itgets around 29 -30 I drive with a very heavy foot though.
  • Quite simple really...if you are referring to the EPA sticker originally on the car those numbers were inaccurate because of flawed EPA testing that had been done for decades producing higher than "real world" numbers and naturally when real people drove them in the real world the numbers didn't match (they are usually lower). Second, every single person has different driving environments and different personal driving habits. Idling for long amounts of time if you live where winter means snow ice and frost on the glass every morning produces 0 MPG or if you floor the gas at every stoplight only to slam on the brakes at the next. The list goes on and on but you get the picture. Finally, for 2008 the EPA tests have been revised and the numbers posted are more realistic: 19 city/28 highway. Oh, you DO know that you should reset the fuel economy numbers at every fill up or the number shown will be "obsolete" in the sense that (I think) the sampling rate of your economy diminshes over long periods of time. This used to be true, at least in the 90's Fords I owned, but I am by no means sure it still is.
  • I rent a lot and we rented two 2007 Sonata's back to back over two week-ends recently. The first was a GLS I-4 4speed automatic and the most recent was a GLS 3.3 V-6 5 speed automatic. I will post our fuel economy numbers with both. Both were used mostly on non-city, non-stop and go type driving.
    1. The 4 cylinder was driven from Chambersburg Pa to Gettysburg Pa on US Rt. 30 which is moderately hilly terrain at about 60 mph. I drove through Gettysburg which has a fair amount of tourists even in the winter and all the traffic lights there. From Gettysburg I drove to Harrisburg Pa on Rt 15 which is a 4 lane 65 mph highway and I drove 65. Once there traffic increased and there was quite a bit of stop-go. We accomplished what we went there for. We then stopped for supper, after getting lost and doubling back for quite a few miles through a small town trying to find a new restaurant we wanted to try. The return trip was via I-81 at higher speeds of 72-75 mph. After returning home the trip computer fuel economy said 31.4 mpg. The next day we puttered around town and I ran a few impromptu full throttle 0-80 and 50-70 mph acceleration runs because I am considering buying a Sonata (V-6 or 4? 4 or V-6? can't decide) and I wanted to know if the 4 would be satisfactory for me. (it was). Anyhow, when I turned it in on Monday it showed 28.8 MPG over-all for the week-end.
    2. Last week-end I rented a V-6 ( continuing my quest in trying to decide V-6 or 4 ) but the drive was somewhat different. We drove this one from Chambersburg Pa to pick up the Pa Turnpike via US Rt-30 then a rural 2 lane during which I drove at between 55-60 MPH. Upon entering the Turnpike we drove west with the cruise locked on at 70 MPH to Somerset. There are mountains between Chambersburg and Somerset (even though they are minimized and gentled as much as possible on the Turnpike). The car was parked when we got where we were headed until the return trip. Again after negotiating mountains on Rt-30 in Somerset county I picked up the turnpike in Bedford Pa. The return was driven somewhat faster, between 75-80 mph, because the V-6 is truly quick and fast not to mention cruising at 80 is the same as cruising at 60 as far as the car is concerned....effortless. Anyhow after driving at these speeds I again retraced our route back home. Once again that night I performed some impromptu 0 to ? acceleration runs. I originally wanted to see 0-60 mph but before it could register I had hit 60 mph it was well on the way to 80 mph and beyond so these were 0-80 mph runs. I also wanted to see 50-70 mph to simulate a 2 lane pass and again it went well beyond 70 to nearly 100 mph. Needless to say I was giddy with its power. Back to fuel economy....the computer said between 26.7 to 27 mpg on the turnpike part, dropped a bit on the mountain parts on US Rt-30 to the high 25's then oddly enough returned to the high 26's on the return trip at higher speeds. Overall when returned it showed 25.7 mpg including the speed runs.
    This is long and detailed but I learned, as I thought, the I-4 is more economical but the V-6 isn't bad on the highway and waaaay quicker. I still don't know what I want to buy but increasing gas costs (with higher yet predictions) will probably dictate the I-4....too bad in a way because that 6 is great.
    The total miles driven for the 4cyl was between 250-300 and the total for the V-6 was over 300.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Good post. So if you drive 12000 a yr it would cost you around $15 extra per month plus slightly higher up-front and long term maintenence costs. That is a hard decision. I realize it's not a ton more but it's a decision that just a few years ago was a no brainer....we went for the six, baby. I feel your pain.
  • slamtazslamtaz Posts: 55
    I know what your going thru... :confuse:

    and we ended up with the SE V6... :)

    my wife's averaging between 24-25 daily commute of about 20 miles (one way) to and from work with mixed city/hiway 50/50. very pleased so far at almost 11,000 miles now :shades:
  • dxwdxw Posts: 4
    My SE V6 2007 gives 12~13 mpg in west LA daily commute, 22~23 on PCH (a state highway with speed limit 55mph.) Never really tried express way >65 mph yet. The first 1000 miles average is 20.7mpg.

    This compares to my previous vehicle (Corolla DX 95). In the same routes, my Corolla 95 has 20~22 mpg local and 33~35 on PCH. The 50000 miles average is 28mpg.
  • craigbrookscraigbrooks Posts: 420
    Just filled up today and calculated 22 mpg in "my" city driving with the I4. I know with a 6 I would do much worse. Well I don't "know" but in all my 6's I've owned in the past I've gotten less. I'm glad I bought the 4 with 88 octane at $3.21/gallon here.

    Target, if you haven't pulled the trigger yet, go for the 4. You'll be satisfied with it. Now if you want MORE power I'd go with the 6. Thinking of your past my friend. :shades:
  • targettuningtargettuning Posts: 1,371
    I am currently waiting for the 2009 SE versions to show up in our area. I have driven an 09 GLS I-4 and found it to be very quick for a 4 cylinder and as quick as some V-6's I have driven though not as quick as either the 06 to 08 V-6 Sonata or certainly not the 09 V-6 which has both improved torque and h.p. The mid range 50-70 mph test I like to run (simulates a 2 lane road pass) was particularly satisfying. So, I have to agree (counter to all my "muscle car" era feelings that "too much is just enough" when it comes to power) the 4 is the smart buy these days. By the way the new 4 is very quiet at idle and barely is off idle at 65 mph ( just over 1650 RPM) with the 5 speed automatic.
  • craigbrookscraigbrooks Posts: 420
    1650 rpm at 65? NOW that is an improvement! I run about 2750 with my 06 4 speed at 75.

    You're right the 4 is the smart buy these days. How did the 4 sound as it was getting up to speed? Could you live with it? I may trade up to an 08 or 09. Heard my local Hyundai dealer is putting up some poor sales numbers. May have to go knock on their door.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    1650 at 65 for a 4 cyl? Is this a typo? My Mazda6 runs at about 2500-2600 at that speed.
  • mm7mm7 Posts: 51
    " I have driven an 09 GLS I-4 and found it to be very quick for a 4 cylinder and as quick as some V-6's "

    How much quicker is the 09 4cyl vs the 08 4cyl? I am not sure if it was worth passing up a $3k rebate for the improved engine & interior......thanks
  • targettuningtargettuning Posts: 1,371
    OK, I might have unintentionally misquoted the RPM @ 65. I will back off the 1650 number but as best that I can remember it was less than 2000 but more than 1650 probably around 1900. Maybe someone who is about to take a test drive can note those numbers and report back I also believe,but can not confirm first hand, that the RPM @ 75 will be much lower than your 2750 simply because of that 5th gear. UPDATE....UPDATE: ok using the Car @ Driver (Mar 2008 issue) test of mainstream sedans as a reference, there is a chart listing "mph/per 1000 rpm" on the specifications page (in 5th gear it runs 31 mph per 1000 rpm) the new Sonata computes to run at 2500 RPM @77.5 mph and 2000 RPM @62 mph so 65 mph would be about that.
    I have had minimal experience with a 2007 I-4 we rented three weeks ago and even though about two weeks passed between that rental and the 2009 test drive I remember thinking the 2009 seemed quieter even though the 2007 rental was acceptable in that regard. This in answer to your "getting up to speed" noise question.
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